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Preacher of Hate

It seems that hate "preacher" Fred Phelps, infamous for his aggressive attacks on homosexuals, has a new target--dead American soldiers. Welcome to Ethics! That's right, the man responsible for, and other members of his "church" are picketing the funerals of American soldiers killed in Iraq. He claims that the deaths in Iraq are God's punishment on America for supporting homosexuals and for a bombing against them a few years ago. They argue:

"They turned America over to fags; they're coming home in body bags."

"America bombed our church using an IED made by fag students at Washburn U. in Topeka. ...In his retaliatory wrath, God is killing Americans with Muslim IEDs. 'As it is written: vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.'"

They also carry signs stating: "Thank God for Dead Soldiers" and "God is America's Terrorist."

There are not words strong enough to condemn this hateful inaccurate rhetoric. Phelps and his followers defame God and will be held responsible for it. How can one claim to be a follower of Christ and call God a terrorist?! To “thank God” that soldiers have been killed and to attack homosexuals and others with such venom suggests that these individuals are not inspired by the love and forgiveness of Jesus (or that they have ever read the Gospels).

Compare Phelps's words and actions with those of Jesus in John 15:12-14. He said, "My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command." Clearly Phelps is no follower or friend of Jesus. So, who does his message really come from?

Unfortunately many people may believe that Phelps represents the Christian, or Baptist, perspective. If he and his followers are in your community someday, please let your community know that he is wrong and does not represent Christianity. Write letters to the editors condemning him and talking about the love and forgiveness of Jesus. Maybe even consider protesting his group while they picket, or try to let the grieving families know that God loves them and cares for them (and did not kill their loved one like a terrorist). Please do this! It is our responsibility to condemn and defeat anti-Christ rhetoric such as this.

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